State, county candidates announce bids for office

By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey
Reader Staff

The May primary is shaping up to be a busy one in North Idaho, as state and local candidates share campaign announcements ahead of the official election filing deadline on Friday, March 11. 

Dover resident Mark Sauter announced his bid March 8 for Idaho House of Representatives Seat 1A — a position left open after redistricting rendered current Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, no longer a resident of the district.

Sauter, a Republican, has led a career in firefighting and city management. The outdoor enthusiast and volunteer said he has “the time and determination to contribute to Idaho’s quality of life.”

“We need leaders who are responsible, who listen to all their constituents and who will collaborate with their conservative colleagues to find solutions,” Sauter stated in a news release, also acknowledging the “divided” nature of current Republican politics. “I look forward to meeting and listening to as many Bonner and Boundary County citizens as possible over the next couple of months.”

As for county-level races, Selle Valley resident and Republican Grant Dorman announced his run for Bonner County Assessor on Feb. 7 on a platform centered on “respect for privacy, respect for property rights and respect for people.” He said in a media release that he was inspired to seek the position after experiencing “firsthand frustration with excessive backlog and wait times at the DMV and concerns over privacy and property rights matters.”

The career surveyor and U.S. Navy veteran said he plans to keep an “open-door policy” if he is elected, and will gladly assist homeowners who wish to appeal their appraisals to the Board of Equalization (BOE).”

In the race for two open Bonner County commissioner seats, the Republican primary will see a number of new names in both the District 2 and 3 contests. Announcing his run for the District 3 seat is Ron Korn, who identifies as “a Christian conservative standing for liberty, stronger local-over-federal government, property rights and overall accountability in governance.”

The 24-year Bonner County resident has assisted the sheriff’s office in search and rescue training, volunteered as a firefighter and founded both the 7 Bravo Militia and locally-based Freedom and Civil Liberties Union.

Also joining the District 3 race is Richard Harter, who shared in a media release his frustration with county business he believes encourages development and is being “conducted behind closed doors.”

Now serving as Clark Fork Fire Chief, Harter said he and his wife moved to Bonner County a decade ago to raise their daughter “in a rural community with strong traditional values.”

“As commissioner, I will ensure that Bonner County residents are my first priority,” he said, adding later: “From day one my door will not be open, it will be removed.”

Throwing her hat into the District 2 race is Blanchard resident Asia Williams, who has been a regular attendee and commenter at recent Bonner County commissioner meetings, opposing the adoption of Juneteenth as a recognized holiday and leading the fight against spending American Rescue Plan Act funds. She said she will use her background in “business, nursing and leadership” to make “decisions based on evidence” for Bonner County, according to a press release.

“I am not afraid to make a decision,” she continued. “I will never allow someone to drown out the sound of my voice, the voice of the people.”

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